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Demand Gen, GTM

Account Based Advertising Strategies for SaaS Companies

Jacco van der Kooij

Written by Jacco van der Kooij

Founder, Winning by Design


Account Based Advertising StrategiesAccount Based Advertising Strategies


We hosted an invitation only event for Storm Portfolio companies and Winning By Design Customers about Account Based Advertising. We had three speakers share hands-on best practices and tips:

Lin Ling, Director of Growth – SourceClear

Charlie Liang, Director of Marketing – Engagio*

Sven De Meyere (via Zoom), Head of Digital – Showpad

Here are the Top 10 recommendations from the group:

Define Your Ideal Customer Profile

Only use on top tier target accounts

You want to have your accounts selected first. Once you select the accounts you can use more focused advertising. Account selection is half the work. The goal of account based advertising isn’t necessarily to get MORE leads. The primary goal of account based advertising is to get BETTER leads, with higher conversion rates to opportunities and deals.

Defining an ideal customer profile helps with:

Cross departmental collaborations

Running more effective marketing campaigns

Training new sales employees

Market to who matters

Develop compelling, engaging content that speaks to each person on the buying committee and the larger strategic business initiative that they share.

Measure and Test Everything

Have an end goal in mind

You don’t want to run ads for the sake of running ads. Account Based Advertising is expensive, so the most effective use of account based advertising is often early in the sales cycle and when you don’t have any other way to reach these people.

Measurement is key

Start out with an AB test to see how much the advertisements helped the overall profit. If your website traffic, leads, or opportunities grew 40% you want to know whether they would have grown that much without advertisements.

Play with bids

Find your ratio of daily budget vs. bids. You may be surprised by whether minimum or maximum bids work best for you. Sometimes increasing your maximum bid doesn’t necessarily yield more leads.

Shift advertising spending from Google Adwords to Social Channels

By shifting advertising dollars from  Google search marketing to sponsored LinkedIn posts, one company was able to increase the number of qualified leads five times. In parallel this company also improved it’s targeting to just focus on Ideal Customer Profile accounts which improved conversion from lead to opportunity by five times, a combined 25x improvement.

Advanced Account Based Advertising Strategies

Don’t do it by itself

By itself it isn’t as good as combining Account Based Advertising with other Account Based strategies such as sending a highly relevant direct mail piece or have a sales development rep reach out to these customers at the same time as you are running ads.

Keep it simple

If your goal is to get awareness, it is more effective to put up your logo, than to ask viewers to download a free trial or to read a paragraph or two.

Content gets stale

If you see the performance of your account based ads drop, try swapping out the content. Content used in promoted LinkedIn posts may need to be replaced every two to three weeks to remain relevant for the audience.